Tournament of Roses: Buds of every size are springing up in the Crown City over New Year's Day, thanks to the 131st Rose Parade presented by Honda, while the 106th Rose Bowl presented by Northwestern Mutual game is ready to square off not long after the float-filled procession wraps. Will you be watching the regal, petal-bedecked vehicles pass by or cheering on Oregon or Washington or even catching the post-parade showcase, which stretches into Jan. 2? Start here, Rosy revelers.
New Year's Eve: It's not all Rose-related happenings around Southern California when the fresh year rolls onto the calendar (though, yes, those are plentiful). There's also some celebrating to do, if you'd like to make merry on the final day of 2019. Grand Park in DTLA is the biggie (and free, too), while Long Beach and Knott's Berry Farm will have fireworks. As for the offbeat offerings? The Groundlings will be raising a midnight toast following some hot improv. Find more picks and choices and 2019-goodbye-ing here.
Oshogatsu Festival: The Year of the Rat is on its fortuitous way, but you can start the celebrating early with Little Tokyo's annual New Year's Day delight. There'll be free performances aplenty to enjoy, including Taiko drumming and lion dancers. Be sure to stay for a calligraphy demonstration or the "Harajuku-style fashion shows." Weller Court and Japanese Village Plaza are the places to be on Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020. Start time? Everything revs up just before 11 a.m., and wraps up around 4 o'clock. Happy New Year.
First Day Hikes: Looking to begin 2020 in nature? With someone to guide you on a pleasant and energetic walk by a few glorious trees or bluffs or mountains? You can join a First Day Hike, a free event that pops up in a number of state parks across the country. Find a gathering near you, in a park you love or want to know better, then get the info for the Jan. 1 meet-up. One tempting SoCal strut? A morningtime adventure at Saddle Butte State Park.
Local news from across Southern California
The Autry Museum of the American West: A number of cultural favorites will be closed for the holiday, but this Griffith Park-based repository of paintings, films, sculptures, and informative exhibit is inviting everyone to come spend the first day of the year exploring. And oh hello: Admission is free on Wednesday, Jan. 1, too. Good stuff and a great way to begin what is bound to be the best year yet.